New Year’s Eve Geranium Drop in McDonough Saturday



By Jason A. Smith
Times Correspondent



Hundreds of people are expected to flock to downtown McDonough Saturday to get 2017 off to a festive start.



Crowds gathered for the Geranium Drop last year on the McDonough Square. Special photo



The sixth annual Geranium Drop is set for New Year’s Eve, beginning at 8 p.m. The night’s festivities will feature live music, as well as food and dancing, and will culminate with a countdown to midnight. There is no charge to attend the event.

Christy Collier, tourism director for McDonough Hospitality & Tourism, said the Geranium Drop provides a unique way for families to celebrate the occasion together.

“It adds to the quality of life in McDonough,” she said. “It’s a fun way to spend New Year’s Eve with friends and family.”

The family-friendly celebration has remained a popular destination since its inception for party-goers on New Year’s Eve. Collier is hopeful for that trend to continue.

“We probably had about 1,000 last year,” she said. “We’re hoping for about 2,000 this year if the weather holds out.”

The Psycho-DeVilles will perform during the event, as well as DJ Weston Forbes. Several restaurants on and around the Square will be offering food and drink specials on New Year’s Eve. Collier noted that a few food vendors are being brought in as well, based on crowds from past Geranium Drop events.

“Because of the volume of people, we needed to bring additional forces in,” she said. “Our restaurants stay packed on New Year’s Eve.”

Collier added that this year’s Geranium Drop will also feature at least one new attraction, which will be hard to miss for those in attendance.

“We have a new design this year for the ‘ball, but we’re not revealing it until New Year’s Eve,” said Collier.

Hospitality & Tourism board member, Mike Warren, is among those finalizing plans for the Geranium Drop. He said several factors have contributed to the decision to change what people will see descending from the sky at midnight Saturday.

“We tried to get something that has the geranium theme,” said Warren. “We wanted it to be festive. We still have the original geranium pot that may make an appearance in some fashion.”

Warren said the Geranium Drop has undergone a transformation in recent years, and continues to shines a positive light on McDonough. He added that support from residents and community leaders have helped to make the Drop a success over the years.

“It started out as just a community event to have a New Year’s Eve celebration without having to go to Atlanta,” said Warren. “We never realized it would grow as big as it did, but I guess that’s a good thing. We just wanted to do something local, and the city has gotten behind it 1,000%.”

This weekend will mark the first Geranium Drop for Main Street McDonough Program Manager Courtney Whitman. She said along with music and food, the night will offer guests a look back at the last 12 months in the city.

“We’ll have a slide show that will have pictures we’ve taken over the year with Main Street McDonough, just showing our appreciation for all of our partners we’ve worked with throughout the year,” she said.

Whitman has been working to get the word out about the Geranium Drop, in hopes of drawing a large crowd this year. She said she is looking forward to celebrating the beginning of a new year with area residents and showing visitors what the city has to offer.

“I don’t know what to expect, but I’m just ready to see a lot of people out here,” said Whitman. “Our main thing is to get people excited about McDonough. You’d be surprised, the people who don’t come to the Square. So, we just want people to know the resources and the quality of life that McDonough offers.

To that end, Whitman said, Main Street McDonough will be offering a few perks for attendees at this year’s Geranium Drop.

“We want people to know us as well, so we’re going to have a $100 gift card that was sponsored by Eagle’s Landing Family Practice,” explained Whitman. “We’re also going to raffle off an Ashley Furniture Home Store blanket and pillow set. We’ll have a booth set up outside for people to come meet us and greet us.”

Additional details about the Geranium Drop are available online at http://visitmcdonough ga.com/.